For those who want to be involved in commercial real estate, whether to run a business, use it as an investment, to be a landlord, or for any other reason, it is very important to have the right contacts. Indeed, networking is vital in any industry, regardless of the type of work you do, but you do have to network with the correct people. In the world of commercial real estate, you have to deal with lending, escrow, titles, architecture, construction, deeds, leases, and more. This means that your network has to include certain types of workers, such as accountants, lawyers, architects, construction workers, and so on.
Importance of a Good Commercial Real Estate Broker
Building your network has to start with finding a commercial real estate broker.
A commercial real estate broker is a licensed professional who helps clients buy, sell, or lease properties that will be used for business purposes. They represent and act as mediators between buyers and sellers. Real estate is a very competitive field.
A good broker can help you to make sure you find the parcel that is right for you, or that you find a buyer if you are looking to sell a property that you already own. The value of a good real estate broker simply cannot be underestimated. However, you will need other contacts as well, since a real estate transaction involves so many different elements and so many different players. The reality is that there are always problems with securing a real estate deal. Something will always go wrong, and you have to be prepared for that. You also need to make sure, therefore, that you have the professionals in your network who can resolve whatever the issue is that you are facing. The issues could be anything from a leaking roof to unexpected zoning restrictions.
Municipal or local government laws that dictate how real property can and cannot be used in certain areas. Zoning laws limit commercial use of land in order to prevent oil, manufacturing or other types of businesses from building in residential neighborhoods. However, these laws can be modified or suspended if construction of the property will serve to help the community advance economically.
There are obvious players in your network, including the aforementioned accountant, lawyer, architect, and so on. However, there are some less obvious professionals to consider as well. While it is likely that you won’t often require their skills and knowledge to help secure your real estate deal, it is always better to be safe than sorry. That way, should certain eventualities occur (and they aren’t that rare, in actual fact), you will be ready to take appropriate action.
1. A Project Manager
Whenever you are dealing with commercial real estate, whether to buy or sell, you are talking about moving an entire business entity. After all, either a new business will move into the property, or one will move out. That is a significant project that often leads to significant downtime. Having a project manager on board who can help properly manage this move is very important. They can make sure all the different details are thought of, from signage to installing new computers. They can also help with determining whether tenant improvements should be made, should you lease the building out. Essentially, they have a huge variety of skills that they can offer you, and you can usually pick and choose which elements you want to use.
2. A Land Use Attorney
Anyone involved in any kind of commercial real estate transaction will have links to an attorney. However, many forget the importance of having contacts with specialized legal professionals, such as a land use attorney.
Depending on the land use issue, you may want to work with an attorney who practices real estate or municipal law. If you are challenging an eminent domain claim by the city, your attorney may take a close look at the municipality’s “public use” claim to make sure it’s valid. If you are looking for a new location for your company’s headquarters, your legal counsel probably would research the zoning laws of each prospective location.
A land use attorney doesn’t just look at zoning, however. They may also focus on things such as solar panels that power multiple parcels, shared usage of car parks and access, and more. If you are looking at a parcel that has a neighboring property, which most parcels do, then it is likely that you will need a land use attorney, even if it is solely to confirm that all is in order.
3. A Specialty Building Expert
There are numerous different types of specialty buildings, such as schools, churches, and restaurants. Restaurants and bars, for instance, are very commonly found in areas such as Anaheim, which thrives on the tourism industry. Finding specialty buildings can be difficult, as can selling such a building. If you have an interest in such types of properties, then it is recommended that you work with a specialist as well. Some real estate professionals focus solely on certain types of specialty buildings. While they are usually somewhat more expensive, they may be able to save you a great deal of money overall.
4. A Fire Sprinkler Consultant
Last but not least, you may have to work with a fire sprinkler consultant. If you have a warehouse or other storage facility, then you must meet the relevant fire code standards.
The International Fire Code (IFC) is a model code that regulates minimum fire safety requirements for new and existing buildings, facilities, storage and processes. The IFC addresses fire prevention, fire protection, life safety and safe storage and use of hazardous materials in new and existing buildings, facilities and processes. The IFC provides a total approach of controlling hazards in all buildings and sites, regardless of the hazard being indoors or outdoors.
The rules and regulations contained within those codes are quite complex. Essentially, in a warehouse, you are allowed to build a storage stack, but how high that can be will depend on how flammable are the items stored in the warehouse. Exceptions can be made if the sprinkler system is the most up to date and upgraded one, however. This is a significant complexity and you should consider hiring a fire sprinkler consultant to make sure you are fully compliant.